4 More Reasons to Save in a 529 Plan

Paul FennerEducation Planning

College Planning, Triplets

A week ago, I had a post tying retirement and college planning/saving together.

Below are four more reasons why 529 plans can be the best vehicle to save for college

  1. Lower Impact on Financial Aid than Other Savings Options
    • One of the significant advantages of a 529 plan is its lower impact on financial aid eligibility compared to other savings options. Many parents worry that saving in a 529 account might hinder their child’s eligibility for financial aid. However, the good news is that as long as you, the parent, are the account owner, the funds are generally considered yours rather than your child’s. This distinction minimizes the impact on financial aid, making the 529 plan an attractive choice.
  2. Everyone Can Help
    • Another reason to consider a 529 plan is the ability to receive contributions from multiple sources. You don’t have to shoulder the entire burden of saving for your child’s education on your own. Grandparents, family members, and friends can also contribute to the 529 plan, maximizing its growth potential. This collaborative approach allows you to build a substantial education fund for your child.
  3. Unused Funds Can Be Used for Other Eligible Members of Your Family
    • Flexibility is a key feature of a 529 plan. If your child or grandchild doesn’t require all the saved funds or their education goals change, you can designate a new beneficiary within the family without incurring penalties. This flexibility ensures that the funds you save in the 529 plan can still be used effectively for educational purposes within your family.
  4. Estate Tax Planning Benefits
    • In addition to the aforementioned benefits, a 529 plan also provides estate tax planning advantages. Contributions made to the plan may qualify for an annual gift tax exclusion, allowing you to save on taxes. Single filers may qualify for a $16,000 annual gift tax exclusion, while couples can enjoy up to $32,000. Moreover, certain 529 plans even permit you to contribute up to five years’ worth of gifts at once, providing significant tax benefits.

A 529 plan is an excellent choice for saving for your child’s college education. With its lower impact on financial aid, the ability to receive contributions from various sources, beneficiary flexibility, and estate tax planning benefits, saving in a 529 plan is a wise decision. Start planning for your child’s future today and Save in a 529 Plan!

Here you can find the first four reasons why contributing to a 529 plan can be a great way to plan for college